Jammu: A shutdown was observed in Rajouri town on Friday to protest the attack on a BJP leader’s house last night that left a three-year-old boy dead and six other people injured.
Scores of people, some of them BJP workers, also took out a protest rally denouncing the attack. They raised anti-Pakistan slogans.
Seven members of BJP leader Jasbir Singh’s family were injured after suspected terrorists lobbed a grenade at his house in Rajouri district’s Khandli area on Thursday night. The grenade exploded on the rooftop, police said.
The three-year-old boy, Veer, who was among the injured, died during treatment at the government medical college hospital in Rajouri around midnight, sources said.
All shops were shut and there was no traffic on roads on Friday in Rajouri town.
Agitators blocked a highway on a call by the Sanatan Dharam Sabha, but police managed to prevent them from going too far ahead.
Protesters blamed chinks in the security apparatus for the attack. They said terrorists are roaming freely and attacking BJP leaders with grenades.
Speaking to reporters in Rajouri, Jammu and Kashmir BJP president Ravinder Raina blamed Pakistan for the attack.
“Pakistan and its terrorist forces attack soft targets and unarmed people and kill them. They are cowards,” he said.
Another BJP leader said, “Terrorists tasked by Pakistan are out to target and kill BJP leaders. It is happening in the entire union territory. They want to instil fear among minorities here but we will not be cowed down by such acts.”
Despite encounters taking place in Rajouri and the obvious movement of terrorists, he said, the police have totally failed to protect the BJP leaders.
He advocated the distribution of weapons and the setting up of village defence committees (VDCs) for the protection of minorities.
Deputy Commissioner, Rajouri, R K Shavan assured the protesters that all measures would be taken to ensure the safety of the people, adding that the administration condemns the attack.
“The injured will be flown to Jammu in a helicopter for specialised treatment,” he said.
On the demand for VDCs, Shavan said the government will look into it.
BJP and Bajrang Dal workers also held protests in Jammu against the attack.